OK, I Lied: No Book Review Today. Maybe Monday. Or Wednesday.

Why no book review today?  Because I’m still thinking about that perfectionism/super-smart post. 

See, I don’t really have much of a problem losing weight (assuming that I’m not bingeing or drinking excessively).   But invariably after a week or two or three, the weight loss stalls out, and often I regain most if not all of it.

I’ve been rolling the super-smart post around in my head, and it occurred to me that it applies to my eating/dieting/etc.  I lose weight without a problem – UNTIL SOMEONE NOTICES.  As soon as someone says, “Hey, you look great – have you lost weight?”  I stop.  Part of that is because I have an almost irrational and neurotic idea of what’s private and what’s public: I HATE having people comment on my body, no matter whether the statement is good or bad.  But part of it is also because of that whole inability to live up to crazy-high standards.  Part of it is that I feel resentful of all those crazy-high standards.  And I know that when someone compliments me on a weight-loss, they’re not necessarily saying, “Thank God!  Now just keep losing and you’ll look fine!” but that’s what I hear.  And I just feel like, “Screw you.  I don’t want to conform to what you want from me or live up to the potential you think I have.  It’s TOO DAMN MUCH!  Leave me alone!”  So I stop losing weight.

It’s just . . . an INTERESTING phenomenon.  If by “interesting,” you mean “oddly fucked-up and self-defeating.”  Which I do.  Ahem.

The REALLY hilarious part is that when you rebel against something, and base your choices on that rebellion, you’re STILL being controlled by the very thing you’re trying to throw off.  When I say, “Screw you, I don’t HAVE to lose weight,” when in fact I WANT to lose weight, I’m still allowing other people’s expectations to make my choices for me.  I’m only choosing the opposite thing because I think it’s the opposite of what OTHER people want.  Hence, other people are still controlling my behaviors.  See what I mean?

So.  Short post tonight, because I’m still thinking on this.  Knowing what’s CAUSED something doesn’t always help FIX it.  So now I’ve got to think about how to fix it.  If you’ve got any ideas, hit me in the comments.

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5 responses to “OK, I Lied: No Book Review Today. Maybe Monday. Or Wednesday.

  1. you know, all of this b rings me back to one question.

    do you need to lose weight?

    do you stall because you are already at a great set point?

    all I can think of is ONE PIC (have I seen more?) of you where you looked FANTASTIC and healthy and, well, perfect the way you are….

  2. I had similar today. Had a new shirt on, and just about everyone found it necessary to tell me how nice and well I looked. Which was lovely, but after a few comments, it did get me thinking, “are they saying I usually look like a bag of crap?” or are they saying I’ve put weight on etc etc. Then it dawned on me that it wasn’t so much the fact that they might be commenting on my weight, but just as much that my illness has been so public. By telling me how well I am doing it’s a constant comparison to what I have been. Which whilst well meant, somehow makes me feel patronised and annoyed. Which is possibly just me comparing myself from here to back then, and all the unresolved anger at myself for putting weight on, or getting myself in such a mess in the first place.

    *Sighs* still can’t take a compliment….oh look, I’ve hijacked your whole comment box with me me me me….

    Lola x

  3. Ah, yes, the contrary gene. All of us have it to one extent or another.

    Why do we allow other people to control us? Because no woman is an island. (I sometimes feel like one, but usually only after that second piece of cheesecake…ahem)

    I was going to say something really profound, but I’ve distracted myself with thoughts of cheesecake. Damn it.

    And I would second Miz’s statement about how fantastic and healthy you looked in the picture I saw, but I don’t want to send you into a fury by commenting on your body. So I’ll keep my opinion to myself. 🙂

  4. Do you want to lose weight or are you trying to because you think other people want you to be thinner?

  5. Oh, Miz, I LOVE YOU. And I don’t know that I “need” to lose weight in the health-related sense, but I could definitely stand to drop a few pounds from an aesthetic sense. The pics I post are all carefully selected and taken from a certain angle so I don’t feel gross about myself. But I’m just over 180 on a 5’8″ frame, so I could stand to drop between 25 and 40 pounds without being unhealthy about it.

    Lola, I think that’s part of it for me, too: that idea that when someone says how FANTASTIC you look, no REALLY, it begs the question, “well, how bad did I look before?”

    Hee! BL, you just crack me up. (And now I want cheesecake! Ha!)

    Merry, that’s a really good question, and it’s a complicated answer. I definitely want to lose weight for myself, but of course what I want is shaped by the culture I grew up in. Do you know what I mean? In that sense, very few people are really losing weight for themselves. We’re all shaped by prevailing ideas of what’s acceptable and what’s not.

    Having said that, I don’t think it’s so much that others want me to be thinner as it is that it all goes back to those super-high expectations and that unlimited potential. As soon as someone notices, I feel like I’m EXPECTED to live up to the unspoken promise I’ve just made. Ten or 20 pounds isn’t enough: I have to go the whole distance or I haven’t fulfilled my POTENTIAL. And I know intellectually that people aren’t thinking that, but . . . well, actually, I DON’T know that they’re not thinking that. I’ve certainly overheard conversations about women who’ve lost and regained (or who’ve lost only a little, but no more), and there are always those who will cluck and shake their heads: “Such a shame. She looked so GOOD a month ago!” It just upsets me.

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